Britain was the third largest buyer of lace front wigs worldwide behind the United States and China in the period, said Alibaba.com,, the only listed unit of China's Alibaba Group.
Over half of the searches were for Brazilian hair
, and 29 percent for Indian hair, which has been used for decades in the production of wigs, according to one Indian human hair export website.
The recession dented some demand, she noted, but this has been offset lace wigs by a rise in older women seeking more youthful looking hair through the use of hair extensions, she added.
Hair - or the lack of hair - is also a big issue for male celebrities. England and Manchester United soccer player Wayne Rooney recently posted a photo of himself for followers on social networking site Twitter after undergoing a hair transplant operation.
The trend of ethically sourced beauty products is also on the rise, which has nearly a million users in Britain, and has noted a massive demand globally for eco-packaging.
"We've worked very hard to source ethically harvested real hair. There is a big religious reason in India for people to get rid of their hair, they (have it cut off) and give it to the monks and now it's been given off as an economic resource for the country."
A spokeswomen at Reading-based Bonita Hair, which offers training courses in hair extensions and sells lace front wigs
wholesale via its website, said they had noticed an uptick in people attending their courses since the end of last year.
"This year has got a lot busier... we're training a lot of girls because a lot of them have their own salons and they have so many people who ask for extensions and they're sick of saying no," she said.
The rise in popularity of extensions is also pushing up the wholesale price of lace wigs.
"In the last 10 years, it's tripled, doubled and tripled again," said Ellery, with human hair replacing synthetic hair
in terms of popularity, as women seek more natural looking hair.
So natural, that most celebrities are now reluctant to admit their hair enhancements.
"Celebrities are becoming increasingly shy about what they do to keep themselves glamorous," said Ellery. "They're going more quiet about their additives," she added.
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